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Full text of "Flora Indica Vol-I"

Delphinium.']                        FLORA INDICA.                                       4-7
1. The variety a is that commonly cultivated in gardens in England, where it is
often very luxuriant, with large.leaves, the lobes of which are little divided.    In a
wild state it ;? seldom glabrous, and is very variable in size.   In India it is less
common than some other forms, but specimens of y and e are often barely, if at
all, distinguishable from a.
2.  Viscid specimens from Zan&kar and Piti are identical with an authentic speci-
men ╗f A, risfiosftj Gonim, in Herb. Ilook.
3. [The Aquilegta <pvl'<Jlor& of Wall., which is common in the rainy Himalaya from
Kuraaon westward as far as Kashmir, was long considered by us as having claims to
speciiic distinction.    A more careful study of the genus hp*, however, shown us thalT
there are no charactris in tbe leaves which can be relied upou, and that the elon-
gated or acuminate sepals, which we had regarded as a su&iucnt character, occur
equally in European specimens, which are only distinguished from A. vutgaris and
A, mscosa by those botanists  in whose opinion every trifling variation of aspect
affords specific characters.    There is no doubt that the ordinary state of this* variety
is quite distinct in appearance from the common alpine state of A. vulgaris; hut
not only do the specimens from the interior of the mountains gradually obliterate
these differences, but many specimens from the outer hills, where it cannot be sup-
posed that two species grow, differ in their large leaves as well as in the large
flowers and broader sepals, from the normal state of A, pubijlora.
4.  8 is a very remarkable form, but it is perhaps less deserving of being distin-
guished us a variety than any other, as the monstrous or considerably enlarged
flowers on which its main character depends, occur in very different localities, and
with every variety of leaf and size.   Some of the states of this plant, when the
spur is abnormal, and the sepals are mnch enlarged and obtuse, are very remarkable,
and at first sight have the appearance of being specifically distinct.   They must, how-
ever, be regarded rather as monsters than as anything else.   Some specimens from
Mr. \Vinterljottom must be mentioned, as being included under this variety, lest it
should be supposed that we consider them as distinct.   These seem to be identical,
in flower at least, with A.jucnnda., Fischer.
5.  The smaller forms of A. Pyrmaica, DC,, with a slender, perfectly straight
spur, and viscid pubescence, are readily distinguished from the ordinary form of
A. mttgftris; but unfortunately they pass, in every country in which they occur, by a
series of imperceptible gradations, into A. vulgaris.    The stem becomes tall and
branched, and softly pubescent, the spur becomes much curved, and the flowers
much larger. "Visiani lias well pointed out, in the e llora Dalmatica,' the uncertainty
of the spur as a character, and has stated his conviction that A. Pyrena,tca} with a
straight spur, is not distinct from A. viscosa.   Nor are the rigid glaucous leaves a
sufficient character to distinguish certain states of this variety from the remainder.
16. DELPHINIUM) L.
Sepala 5; posticum calcaratum. Petala 4 (iuterdum in unum calca-
ratum coalita); duo postica basi calcarata, 2 antica unguiculata. Ova-
ria 1-7.Śllerba) annua velpwennes, caulibus erectis. Polia palmatim
lobata. Mores 'conspicid, carulei vel purpitrascentea.
The species of this genus are all natives of the north temperate zone, growing
either in woods or in the grassy pastures of mountainous districts, or in dry, stony,
and desert hot places. None have been found in the mountains of the Indian Archi-
pelago. They are all extremely variable, and the genus is in consequence, if pos-
sible, in still greater confusion than the other genera of Retnunculocece. The mode
of ramification and densenoss of the racemes, the shape and size of the flowers, and
the length of the spur, seem to vary almost as much as the shape of the leaves; and
we have not been successful in our attempt to arrive at definite ideas regarding the
limits of European and North Asiatic species, from the materials at our disposal.